If your infant is 6 months or older, using the best all-natural baby sunscreen when he’s outside is important. However, prior to 6 months of age, you should avoid applying sunscreen of any kind to your baby.
You shouldn’t apply sunscreen to babies younger than 6 months old because, according to Hari Cheryl Sachs, M.D., a pediatrician at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA),
“Babies’ skin is less mature compared to adults, and infants have a higher surface-area to body-weight ratio compared to older children and adults.” explains Sachs. “Both these factors mean that an infant’s exposure to the chemicals in sunscreens may be much greater, increasing the risk of side effects from the sunscreen.”
Instead, keep him covered and in the shade whenever he’s outside. Also, avoid sun exposure between the hours of peak UV ray intensity (10am – 2pm) to keep him safe.
Why Choose an All Natural Sunscreen for Your Baby?
The chemicals in sunscreen can be pretty strong for babies 6 months and older. While they may be a bit more prepared than their younger counterparts, your baby’s skin is new and sensitive.
Because of this, harmful chemicals in sunscreens and other personal care products used on the skin can be even more of a concern. According to Medscape.org:
“In recent years, concerns have emerged over possible hormone-disrupting chemicals in sunscreens, such as oxybenzone. In children, the doubly worrisome scenario of increased percutaneous absorption of chemicals and the enhanced developmental sensitivity to hormone disruption makes this topic extremely contentious.”
Given this, covering up and avoiding the sun is always preferable for babies and young children as well. If you are going to be out in the sun with your older baby, use an all-natural baby sunscreen so your baby is exposed to as few toxins as possible.
Using the best all-natural baby sunscreen is important because there are a variety of potentially toxic chemicals in many of the popular sunscreen brands available today. Some of these include:
This is a commonly used sunscreen ingredient that acts as a UV ray filter. It also penetrates the skin and confuses the body into thinking it is estrogen. This can cause a host of issues including compromised sperm count and endometriosis. Some studies are showing oxybenzone can even cause cell damage.
This is a synthetic form of Vitamin A that’s been shown to cause skin damage and possibly even cancer when used on skin exposed to sunlight.
Lurking under names like butylparaben, ethylparaben, and others, parabens are used in a variety of skincare products, including sunscreens, as preservatives. They’ve been shown to cause allergic reactions, hormone disruption, and more.
Chemical-based fragrances can irritate sensitive skin. They also don’t have to be noted on the ingredient label as anything more than “fragrances” so you can’t ever be sure exactly what that means.
If these sound like ingredients you don’t want to rub into your baby’s skin, then an all-natural sunscreen designed for babies and young children is your best option for sun protection when you’re outside.
5 of the Best All-Natural Baby Sunscreen Products
The best all-natural baby sunscreen products are effective without the use of questionable chemicals. But how can you keep track of all of these ingredients to avoid? You do have a baby after all! That’s why we’ve compiled this list of the 5 best all-natural baby sunscreens for you.
This all-natural baby sunscreen is probably one of the most natural you’ll find. It even features non-nano zinc. This has become important in recent years given the unknown effects of nanoparticles which are used to give zinc a spreadable consistency so it doesn’t feel gritty or chalky.
Badger Baby Sunscreen also includes beneficial, organic herbs like calendula, chamomile, and seabuckthorn which are known to soothe and protect the skin.
The consistency of this all-natural baby sunscreen can be thick, though. This can be a turn off to some parents because it takes a bit of time to rub in. We all know that’s time you often don’t have with a squirmy baby!
ThinkBaby Safe Sunscreen is another great choice for an all-natural baby sunscreen. It has a non-toxic ingredient list, a pleasant scent, and a more oily consistency when compared to some of the other options.
While some parents do prefer this, others feel it’s too runny. You’ll have to take your own personal preferences into account.
Sunology’s all-natural baby sunscreen uses zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to provide its sun protection. Many parents like its smooth formula and the fact that it’s water-resistant for up to 80 minutes.
It does have a few other ingredients like BIS-PEG-12 Dimethicone Candelillate, and Glyceryl Isosterates that aren’t the best. Even still, it’s a solid, all-natural baby sunscreen compared to other options out there.
California Baby actually has an entire line of all-natural baby sunscreen products including a formulation made for “super sensitive skin.” While all are fairly low in toxicity, their Super Sensitive Sunscreen Lotion is the one to choose if you’re looking for the best all-natural baby sunscreens.
While it does have a great ingredient list, this is another baby sunscreen that has a thick consistency. It can also leave a white residue if not rubbed in thoroughly.
In addition to non-nano zinc, this is one of the best all-natural baby sunscreens because it also contains cocoa butter, sunflower oil, and shea butter to moisturize and protect your baby’s skin. It’s also unscented.
This is another thin, natural sunscreen option that many have described as greasy. Others feel like Adorable Baby is a great sunscreen option because it’s so easy to apply. Again, it comes down to personal preference.
All of these baby sunscreens have received a rating of 1 on EWG’s Cosmetics Database (which is awesome!), and contain the least amount of questionable ingredients of those baby sunscreens that were granted EWG’s best rating.
You can see EWG’s entire cosmetics database by clicking the link in our “Sources” section at the bottom. After all, sunscreen isn’t the only thing you’re rubbing into your baby’s skin or your own for that matter.
You can review the toxicity of nearly any personal care product, from your baby’s shampoo and lotion to the shaving cream your husband uses to your favorite eyeliner or deodorant, on this one site. Then you can be sure you’re choosing the best all-natural baby sunscreen and other products to keep your family safe and healthy.
If you enjoyed this article read our other articles:
- Love That Baby Skin! Top 5 Best Baby Lotions & Moisturizers
- 5 Diaper Changing Station Ideas That Will Make You a Dirty Diaper Destroyer
- How to Choose from the Safest Travel Beds for Babies
EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database
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